Welwyn Garden City Sidings

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Mickey
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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Mickey » Sat Nov 29, 2014 1:16 pm

The top picture. Wots that a set of B.R.Mk2 coaches in the old Hertford platform wots the world coming to???. Was also known as 'the back platform' and was platform no.4 back then but these days it is platform no.1 (Network Rail re-numbering scheme obviously).

The middle picture. Unofficially known as 'the WGC pilot' back then or officially called a 350hp diesel shunter which later became a class 08 shunter after TOPS re-numbering in 1974.

The bottom picture. Ah yes i remember that scene very well i use to walk through those Up sidings daily to & from the station back during 1974/75, those clump of trees in the far distance is where the path lead up the embankment that i use to use that i mentioned in a previous post of mine.

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by S&T » Sun Nov 30, 2014 2:05 pm

Apologies for the slow response.....been away for a while.

The addition posts from Micky and Macduff have been very useful and I would like to thank you both for taking the time to respond with your thoughts and memories. The photos are particularly helpful and appreciated. It has helped to recall the sidings structure.

Thanks gents.
S&T

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Mickey » Sun Nov 30, 2014 10:34 pm

There was several trains that were booked to arrive and depart the WGC Up yard during the first half of the 1970s that i can remember.

1.7B66 departed Kings Cross Goods yard on week day mornings sometime between 02:30-02:45hrs and was usually worked by a class 31 loco with the train consisting of about 4 or 5 fully fitted vans in the front portion and about 8 or 9 loose coupled coal/coke wagons in the rear portion with a brake van for WGC. 7B66 would arrive at WGC sometime around 03:15-03:30hrs and on arrival in the Up yard the brake van plus the coal/coke wagons would be 'knocked off' the rear and left on a road in the Up yard while the front portion consisting of about 4 or 5 vans would go forward as 6B66 northwards to Huntingdon calling at Hitchin & st Neots along the way.

2.8B07 departed Temple Mills (East London) on week day mornings sometime between 04:30-04:45hrs and was usually worked by a class 31 loco with a train of grain hoppers for the Shredded Wheat factory plus a brake van at the rear arriving at WGC sometime around 05:15-05:30hrs where it was crossed over into the Up yard.

3.The 'Whitemoor Goods' departing WGC Up yard on week day evenings sometime between 19:00-19:30hrs and usually worked by a class 31 loco (by a Hitchin train crew) heading northwards via Hitchin and across the Cambridge branch and on towards G.E. territory, this train was usually a fairly long train with a mixture of wagons (this train may have included the Shredded Wheat grain hoppers in the train?) as well as mineral wagons, box vans and bogie bolster wagons all topped off with a brake van at the rear.

* * *To gain access to the Down main line from the Up yard a train would have to perform a W-shunt from the Up yard. This was done by being signalled out of the Up yard via a ground disc signal that took the train from the Up yard out onto the Up slow line as far as a Limit of Shunt board which was situated about hundred yards or so the station side of the Up slow line Outter home signal (no.49) and then the train would draw up to this board and stop then after getting the road would 'set back' along the Up slow line towards the station and back into the Up slow line platform and stopping with the loco just inside the platform and then after getting the road via another ground disc signal would depart to be crossed over through the connection from the Up fast to Up slow line (in the reverse direction than normally used) and also through the main to main crossover located just underneath the Hunters road overbridge and onto the Down main line and then 'right away' towards Welwyn north.* * *

It was a similar move after the NX panel was installed from late September 1973 onwards but obviously using colour light signals.

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by StevieG » Mon Dec 01, 2014 9:42 am

With the NX panel, weren't such moves (northwards from the Up Yard : less of them by then?) much easier, as the new layout provided a complete 'ladder' capability, by providing direct access from the Up yard, line-by-line, right across to the Down Slow?
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Mickey
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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Mickey » Mon Dec 01, 2014 8:12 pm

StevieG wrote:With the NX panel, weren't such moves (northwards from the Up Yard : less of them by then?) much easier, as the new layout provided a complete 'ladder' capability, by providing direct access from the Up yard, line-by-line, right across to the Down Slow?
To be honest Stevie i'm a bit hazy on this one but i suspect that you are correct any nortbound train exiting the Up yard after the re-signalling in September 1973 would just be signalled through the ladder crossing.

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by macduff » Sun Dec 07, 2014 12:07 pm

I had a dig round in my photo collection and came across this map of the up yard, as you can see it shows the coal road and loading dock roads that were there until they built the new rail severed warehouse.
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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Mickey » Sun Dec 07, 2014 1:34 pm

During the time i was at the box (July 1972-Mar 1974) i don't believe i ever recall seeing the Shredded Wheat 0-4-0 diesel shunter leave the Shredded Wheat or Nabisco's factory sidings i presume any loco maintenance that was done on the loco and refuelling of it was done in there sidings.

I think i vaguely recall up to around 1967 or maybe 1968 the Nabico's diesel shunter was a 0-6-0 then it was changed to a 0-4-0 loco plus also around the sametime either 1967 or 1968 one of the siding roads (the one nearest the Nabisco's factory building) had a makeshift (loco) shed built over it thus reducing the 3 siding roads to just 2 roads although i believe the diesel shunter could still run/round in the sidings.

Strangely enough on several visits to WGC in more recent years between 2008-2012 that makeshift (loco) shed was still there even though the sidings were nearly all lifted and the Shredded Wheat factory was closed down.

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by S&T » Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:20 am

macduff wrote:I had a dig round in my photo collection and came across this map of the up yard
Perfect. That's exactly what I needed. Quite a bit different from today's configuration. The concrete hard walkway area appears much larger than I thought.

Thanks for digging that out.....much appreciated macduff.

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Mickey » Mon Dec 08, 2014 10:32 am

S&T wrote:
macduff wrote:I had a dig round in my photo collection and came across this map of the up yard
Perfect. That's exactly what I needed. Quite a bit different from today's configuration. The concrete hard walkway area appears much larger than I thought.
Yes thats the concrete roadway i referred to in a previous post.

Also there use to be a fair bit of variety in rolling stock that could be found in the Up yard during the 1960s and into the first half of the 1970s such as-

1.Inner suburban rolling stock usually referred to as Block Enders, there was usually x3 sets that were stabled in the Up yard overnight and through the weekends.
2.The rear portion of 7B66 was usually to be found on one of the sidings roads which usually consisted of a brake van plus 8 or 9 short wheel base mineral wagons filled with coal/coke.
3.Various short wheel base box vans usually stabled along side the concrete roadway.
4.The Grain hopper wagons from the Shredded Wheat factory.
5.Also a number of vans for Norton's & Lincoln Electric sidings on the Hertford branch.
6.Also various 'odds & sods' like bogie bolster wagons and even B.R. parcel & GUVs again usually stabled along side the concrete roadway

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by hegenscheidt » Sun Feb 14, 2016 1:28 pm

This post is a continuation from the posts and replies made recently in the Ashburton Grove thread of this forum, thanks to those who replied with more info. Regarding the Hertford branch line and sidings at Holwell Hyde rubbish tip there was some question over whether the rubbish trains were sent there, as well as to Blackbridge. This is what I'm trying to find more information about. During researching this I found the following in the Wellcome Foundation library from 1934/35, it's from Islington Council's Health Officer.
“A scheme for handling the refuse at the Disposal Depot, Ashburton Grove, is now completed and the construction will be started almost immediately. This scheme, which is thoroughly up-to-date, will carry out the loading of railway wagons, etc., in a most hygienic, cleanly and economic manner. Both house and trade refuse, and sweepings and gully silt, are sent by rail to contractors' dumps at Blackbridge and Holwell Hyde, Herts, where the material is deposited in layers approximately 6 feet in depth, each layer being covered with 9 ins. of soil and otherwise treated in accordance with the recommendations of the Ministry of Health.”
Also, another quote from the same source:
“The Medical Officer of Health visits with the Cleansing Superintendent the dumping grounds where the contractors dispose of Islington refuse. A special visit was made while the Survey of the Public Health Services was being made by the Ministry of Health representatives during the summer. The visit occurred just before the August holiday with Dr. Parsons to Holwell Hyde, Cole Green, Herts., one of the dumping places, and conditions were found to be very lax. The contractors subsequently admitted that the complaint was justified, and that the laxity was due to the inefficient supervision by a foreman who had been temporarily appointed. They took immediate action, dismissed the man, and ensured proper supervision.”


This seems to show that the Ashburton Grove Pullman did go to Holwell Hyde, although I don't know when that ceased. The Env Agency reports that the dump site was in operation 1920 onwards. Any other snippets of information about this train, or where further information might be found would be very welcome. Thanks.

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Mickey » Sun Feb 14, 2016 7:56 pm

As previously posted by me on the Ashburton Grove topic thread i vaguely remember the rubbish dump you are interested in that was located south of the Holwell Hyde level crossing this would have been during the late 1960s and for a short while the single line track of the Hertford branch was still layed in but the rails were all rusty by then that must have been just prior the the track being lifted in 1967 and i also remember after the track was lifted as well around 1968-70 it was just a former 'cleaned up' trackbed without the track and ballast being there and since that era of the late 1960s & early 1970s the old track bed has now become The Cole Green Way walking route.

Anyway back to the mid/late 1960s and immediately south of the Holwell Hyde level crossing to the right was a rather large open quarry but about a quarter to a half a mile further south where the single line Hertford branch curved away towards the Cole Green direction was the large open air rubbish dump you are intereted in and i do infact have a very vague memory now of actually accessing the rubbish dump as a 11 or 12 year old kid (1968/69) with a couple of other youngster's who were friend's of mine and from memory it was just a vast open area to the west of the Hertford branch single line of piles of stinking rubbish everywhere with seagulls flying around the site.

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Hatfield Shed » Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:59 am

hegenscheidt wrote:...This seems to show that the Ashburton Grove Pullman did go to Holwell Hyde, although I don't know when that ceased. The Env Agency reports that the dump site was in operation 1920 onwards. Any other snippets of information about this train, or where further information might be found would be very welcome. Thanks.
This thread provoked me to reading a couple of items I picked up just before Christmas 2015, and one of them - a WEA publication of information compiled before publication in November 1960 - contains the information that the London refuse trains that went to Holwell Hyde on the Hertford branch were operating.

Just that and no more! 'Hatfield and its People, part 5, Roads and Railways.'

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manna
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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by manna » Mon Feb 15, 2016 11:09 pm

G'day Gents

8B07,(Shredded wheat train) my favourite working, must have worked that train dozens if times, good job nobody else liked it.

IIRC, you would take a goods train over to Temple Mills from KX goods first, then work to Welwyn, then a all stations to KX !

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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by StevieG » Tue Feb 16, 2016 1:43 am

I've an idea that I recall seeing, in the late '60s, Holwell mentioned as siding(s), and that the 'Holwell Hyde' level crossing that's been mentioned herein was listed as "Birchall", - both of these probably being on the circuit card somewhere of a 'bus 'phone' circuit, probably in WGC or Hatfield No.2 boxes.

Mickey, having looked at three different editions of "One-inch" O.S. Map 147 "Bedford & Luton", your description of where Holwell siding/s was(were) looks spot-on.
In case of interest, and remembering that this sort of O.S. map isn't necessarily accurate for siding layout/s, and can be a bit behind the times on date, the "Fully revised 1930 with later corrections" map, published 1946, showed only one single line diverging right at that location and just going about 400 yards, then bore left about 350 yards before abruptly ending.
The "Fully revised 1951; Major roads revised 1962" map, showed a "Mineral line, siding or tramway" running almost the same course (but the last bit as only about 250 yards long and not so sharply curving to the left), but also with another 'siding' at about 400 yards, turning off to the right for about 250 yards; plus, about 200 yards from the 'main' (WGC- Hert. Branch) single line a trailing connection to another siding, that then went back westwards and ran very roughly straight for about 1,000 yards., ending not too far SE of Holwell Hyde (not the level crossing).
The third map is "Fully revised 1966; Major roads 1968", but of course shows no railway left anywhere around there at all, with the WGC end of the branch only left, shown as still present for only about 1 mile from the main lines I'd guess, ending roughly at the present-day Ridgeway, which I think is where Attimore Hall level crossing was.
Last edited by StevieG on Tue Feb 16, 2016 11:30 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Welwyn Garden City Sidings

Post by Mickey » Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:21 am

StevieG wrote:Mickey, having looked at three different editions of "One-inch" O.S. Map 147 "Bedford & Luton", your description of where Holwell siding/s was(were) looks spot-on.
Thanks for the clarification Stevie, it's funny what stays in the back of your mind many years after the event but i do actually remember visiting that rubbish dump as previously posted and as i said it must have been around 1968 or maybe 1969 also as previously posted on another topic thread a old railway friend and myself actually walked the old track bed of the Hertford branch from east of Hertingfordbury station to WGC station around 1969.

I always liked that length of the old Hertford branch from Welwyn Garden City through Norton's siding-Lincoln Electrics siding-Attimore halt-Ridgeway LC-Holwell Hyde LC and knew it very well between 1966-1974.

I always like to imagine that in the dying days of steam on the southern end of the GN circa 1961-63 alone A3 made a 3:00am 'moonlight run' light engine over the branch from Hertford North to Welwyn Garden City and re-joining the main line. It never happened but it mite have done and wasn't recorded by anyone??.


Mickey

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